These religious chumps get their asses handed to them in this debate.
The earth is not only flat, but the sun is smaller than the earth – because the Koran doesn’t say the earth is round.
1. Â Remember that they are people, just like you are. Â Contrary to what you may have been led to believe, they are not some lower life form we share this planet with.
2. Â More than likely, they are smarter than you are. Â This can be difficult to come to grips with, but it does appear to be true and is a claim that is actually supported by the Bible (1 Corinthians 1:18-31)
3. Â Statistically, they are also as moral, if not more so than you are. Â While it is a good thing that they generally are highly moral,Â it is a shame that we, who often times claim the moral high ground,Â seem unable, or unwilling, to match our words with our lives.
4. Â They will probably thump you in debate. Â They are much more likely to have carefully thought through their position and understand why they believe what they do. Â We are more likely simply to present some argument that the person we heard it from guaranteed would destroy the enemy. Â The problem with that is that many of them have heard the same arguments many times and are easily able to counter them.
5. Â Don’t under-estimate their knowledge of the Bible. Â Many of them are more familiar with the Bible than the average Christian is. Â And they know all of the passages that will cause you a problem, and will not hesitate to challenge you with them.
Â Here’s an interesting article by Richard Dawkins about Creationism, good read.
For good or ill, the late Stephen Jay Gould had a huge influence on American scientific culture, and on balance the good came out on top. His powerful voice will echo on for a long time. Although he and I disagreed about much, we shared much too, including a spellbound delight in the wonders of the natural world, and a passionate conviction that such wonders deserve nothing less than a purely natural explanation.
Another thing about which we agreed was our refusal to engage in public debates with creationists. Steve had even more reason than me to be irritated by them. They distorted the theory of punctuated equilibrium so that it appeared to support their preposterous (but astonishingly common) belief that there are no intermediates in the fossil record. Gould’s reply deserves to be widely known:
“Since we proposed punctuated equilibria to explain trends, it is infuriating to be quoted again and again by creationists ? whether through design or stupidity, I do not know ? as admitting that the fossil record includes no transitional forms. Transitional forms are generally lacking at the species level, but they are abundant between larger groups. “
Some time in the 1980s when I was on a visit to the United States, a television station wanted to stage a debate between me and a prominent creationist called, I think, Duane P Gish. I telephoned Stephen Gould for advice. He was friendly and decisive: “Don’t do it.” The point is not, he said, whether or not you would ‘win’ the debate. Winning is not what the creationists realistically aspire to. For them, it is sufficient that the debate happens at all. They need the publicity. We don’t. To the gullible public which is their natural constituency, it is enough that their man is seen sharing a platform with a real scientist. “There must be something in creationism, or Dr So-and-So would not have agreed to debate it on equal terms.” Inevitably, when you turn down the invitation you will be accused of cowardice, or of inability to defend your own beliefs. But that is better than supplying the creationists with what they crave: the oxygen of respectability in the world of real science.